Details Revealed About Draft Day Trade Talks
Ravens General Manager Ozzie Newsome said after the first round of the NFL Draft that he had conversations with several teams about the possibility of making a trade.
He considered moving up (The Baltimore Sun says Ohio State cornerback Marshon Lattimore was the target), and he also talked with multiple teams about moving back from No. 16.
Now we know which teams he talked with, and exactly what one of them offered.
TheMMQB's Peter King spent the first round inside San Francisco's draft room, and he says the 49ers tried to work out a deal with the Ravens when Baltimore was on the clock. The 49ers badly wanted Alabama linebacker Reuben Foster, and tried to move up 18 spots to get him.
San Francisco's General Manager John Lynch offered Newsome three picks in exchange for No. 16:
Second rounder (No. 34)
Third rounder (No. 66)
Fourth rounder (No. 121)
That deal would have left the Ravens with no first-round pick, but loads of ammunition in the middle rounds. Newsome is known as a shrewd dealmaker on draft day, and he countered the offer by asking for the second rounder and both of San Francisco's third-round picks (Nos. 66 and 67), instead of the fourth rounder.
San Francisco declined.
"Man, that Ozzie," 49ers Chief Strategy Officer Paraag Marathe said after hanging up with Newsome. "Ozzie wants us not to work tomorrow!" (Rounds two and three take place Friday night.)
While the Ravens talked with the 49ers, they were also reportedly having conversations with the Dallas Cowboys about another proposal. The Cowboys sat at No. 28 and wanted to move up 12 spots.
"The Cowboys had conversations with the Baltimore Ravens during the first round of the NFL Draft to move up for Missouri defensive end Charles Harris, according to multiple sources," reported Charean Williams of the Dallas Star-Telegram.
The Ravens and Cowboys also seriously discussed a trade in last year's draft, in which Baltimore wanted to move up two spots, but Williams reported that "trade talks didn't get as close" this year.
Of course, the Ravens stayed at No. 16 and selected Alabama cornerback Marlon Humphrey, who is expected to compete for a starting job this fall.
Eluemunor Epitomizes What NFL Hope to Accomplish
TheMMQB has another interesting nugget Baltimore's draft class.
The Ravens took Texas A&M offensive lineman Jermaine Eluemunor in the fifth round, and his story generated international buzz because he's a London native. His interest in football goes back to the NFL's first annual game in London.
"This is the 10-year anniversary of the NFL playing regular-season games in England," King wrote. "The first was on Oct. 28, 2007, a Giants-Dolphins game at rainy Wembley Stadium. In a northwest London suburb, a 12-year-old boy searched on his TV for an English Premier League game. He came across this other sports event, a sport he'd never seen before, on that gloomy afternoon."
Eluemunor's introduction to football led to a passion for the sport, and it's an example of how the London games are helping to grow the league's international fan base.
"Eluemunor is the first British kid who, quite literally, the NFL can claim is in the league because of the games played in London," King wrote.
"There's evidence that exporting the game is leading to more kids playing it overseas. And now there's the story of one kid flipping the TV channels one day and seeing a game in the big soccer stadium just down the road, and taking it up, and ending up, likely, as one of the league's 1,696 active players in 2017."
The NFL has invested heavily into the London series, and King believes it's only a matter of time until the league has a permanent team there. The Ravens will make their first trip across the Atlantic Ocean to play at Wembley Stadium against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sept. 24.
Roethlisberger 'Seriously' Considered Retirement
When Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger said he was mulling retirement this offseason, not everyone believed it. Ravens Head Coach John Harbaugh said at the owners meetings that he never took it seriously.
Roethlisberger has since announced he's going to play this year, but his former teammate Willie Colon said that return wasn't a certainty.
"I got to sit down and talk to him and one thing he told me is he did take [considering retirement] seriously," Colon said on PFT Live. "He's dealt with a lot of injuries."
The 35-year-old quarterback has dealt with a litany of injuries during his career, and Colon said that the offensive line is the key in determining how much longer he plays.
"He's passionate about playing, but one thing that keeps his fire going is that offensive line," Colon said. "You have to worry about the health of Ben Roethlisberger. Can you keep him upright? Can he stay healthy for the duration? They have the offensive line, they have the pieces around him to make it work."
Former Raven About to Graduate From Law School
It's graduation time and a former Raven is about to receive his law degree.
Former defensive back Chris Carr will graduate from George Washington this weekend, three years after retiring from the NFL. He played three seasons in Baltimore (2009-2011), and started all 16 games in 2010. He has brought his family to games at M&T Bank Stadium in recent years.
During his nine NFL seasons, Carr played in 125 games, made 192 tackles, had seven interceptions and scored one touchdown.
"There was never a question of whether I was going to go to law school or not," Carr told the Washington Post's Sarah Larimer. "It was just when I was going to go, and how long I was going to be able to play, and how long I was going to enjoy playing."
Carr said that he feels completely removed from his NFL career, and he's totally focused on where his career in law is going to take him. He has already accepted a job at Zeman and Petterson, an immigration firm in Virginia.
"I like the sport of football and I really enjoy competing, but I never truly loved football," he said. "Some people can truly love football, and a lot of those people, when they're done, they have to be around football, so they're going to coach or they're going to go into commentary. But I knew I wasn't going to be one of those people."
Carr has three young children (Octavian, 5, Scarlett, 3, and Kelly, not yet 1) who won't remember him as a football player.
"By the time they're older, my main identity is just going to be a lawyer," Carr said. "And so I'm proud of that. It will be good for them to see."